WPRI 12 Eyewitness News Washington DC Bureau

Lawmakers back push for equal pay for US women’s soccer

Washington DC

WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — A week after the US Women’s National Soccer Team won the World Cup, most of the parades and parties have come and gone, but the team’s push for equal pay continues full bore.

One of the team’s major sponsors has stepped up. Procter and Gamble took out a full-page ad in Sunday’s New York Times to announce a $529,000 donation to the players association to help close the pay gap between U.S. men and women soccer players.

“I think we’re done with: ‘are we worth it? Should we have equal pay?'” forward Megan Rapinoe said.

The team is already suing the U.S. Soccer Federation for gender discrimination and members Congress is getting into the game, as well. Lawmakers are making an effort to ensure all women—not just soccer players—get equal pay for equal work.

“Men and women in the same job deserve the same pay,” Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro said. “These young women have been shortchanged over and over and over again.”

DeLauro, D-Connecticut, says there is a legislative fix to the problem: the Paycheck Fairness Act, which passed the House in March and would help close the gender pay gap.

“It’s now at the door of the Senate,” DeLauro added. “Mitch McConnell, in my view, has the obligation to bring up that legislation get it passed in the Senate, get this president to sign it so it becomes the law of the land.”

Other lawmakers are targetting the governing body of U.S. Soccer in order to get their cooperation on equal pay.

Sen. Joe Manchin, D-West Virginia, says U.S. Soccer must close the pay gap.

“[The women] are getting paid 38 cents on the dollar to what the men are getting paid, and they’ve outperformed the men,” Manchin said.

Manchin has introduced a bill that would ban federal funding for the 2026 World Cup until the United States Soccer Federation pays the national women and men’s team the same.

“$14 million of revenue versus $11 million to the men—now you tell me why they’re only getting 38 cents on the dollar?” Manchin asked.

DeLauro says she’s already working on similar action in the House.

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